Counting to be over by noon

Counting to be over by noon

About 2,000 police officers to guard counting centres

All eyes will be on the 14 counting centres on Sunday when EVMs, which recorded the votes of 77.71 lakh Delhi electors on December 4, will be unlocked for counting to give the capital its 70 new legislators.

Delhiites had set a record of high voter turnout at 65.86 per cent while using over 14,200 balloting units at 11,982 polling stations.

The next chief minister is expected to be from the New Delhi or Krishna Nagar constituencies from where Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit of the Congress, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal and BJP’s chief ministerial candidate Harsh Vardhan were in the fray.

The counting process is likely to be over by noon and early trends may emerge in the first two hours, said an election official.

Some exit polls have projected a hung House but the BJP has been expressing confidence of coming to power by riding an anti-incumbency wave.

The BJP expects to be the single largest party and the first one to be invited by the lieutenant governor to form government.

The results will also decide the future of debutant AAP which turned these elections into a triangular contest.

The Congress is hoping that its government's good work does the trick for the fourth successive time but exit polls have indicated that chances of the party forming the next government are very less.

In the meantime, the police have made and elaborate security arrangement at 14 counting centres and have also stepped up security across the capital expecting various rallies by the winning candidates. 

“All the station houses officers have been deputed at the counting centres with their teams and keep a check at counting centres. There would be three layers of security and none without authorised pass will be allowed to enter into the centre,” said a senior police officer.

The security officials along with mounted police team will be deployed outside the centre to maintain law and order as they expect various candidates and their supporters with gathered out the centres.

“Around 2,000 police officers have been deputed at the counting centres and security mechanism has been placed and all the officials have been assigned their respective tasks,” added the officer.

PTI adds: CCTV cameras are also in place and the counting will be streamed live through web casting. “To ensure transparency and that proper procedures are being followed during counting of votes, a ‘live-watch’ will be kept by senior election officials from control room through web casting,” said city’s chief electoral officer Vijay Dev.

“Paramilitary force forms the inner circle of security of centres while adequate numbers of Delhi Police personnel will ensure safety from outside. Counting of votes will start from 8 am tomorrow and during the first hour, postal ballots will be counted,” said Dev.

Over 43,000 postal ballots have been received by Delhi EC, while this figure was 1,600 in last election to the capital’s legislative assembly .

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